With Easter just around the corner , we seem to feel biologically (or is that sociologically?) programmed to have chocolate on the mind! Luckily here at MFCH we have Molly on the team who is always ready to jump into cuisine mode and put together something beautiful for us.
Today she is sharing her recipe for these quite delicious looking mendiants, we hope you love them!
Mendiants are a beautiful French chocolate treat usually eaten as a great way to top off a meal or even before a more voluptuous dessert. They are wonderful to have for a cocktail party as well or little treats with a coffee in the afternoon. They are so simple to make and that go to treat for any time that needs something sweet.
To add just another element and something even more eye-catching, I crystallized edible flowers from the garden. A beautiful addition that adds that little bit of whimsy and uniqueness.
For the mendiants, they are ever so simple, melt chocolate then spoon it into rounds onto parchment paper and add the toppings of your choice. Most classic are dried nuts and fruits or toasted coconut. A lovely twist is edible flowers. The easiest place to buy these is at the bulk section, or do as I did and look for a delicious ready-made mix. Chill until the chocolate is set and serve! To keep in mind, as the chocolate is not tempered, it’s best to keep them in the refrigerator until serving, and they wouldn’t be the best choice for a summer garden party.
To crystallize the flowers, again it’s another easy process that is a great afternoon activity. All you need is a pasteurised egg white and a bowl of sugar. Then scavenge the garden or look for flowers at your local market that are edible. The easiest to crystallize are rose petals and smaller flowers that are thin and don’t have a ton of petals (ex. petunias, not a whole rose).
Using a clean small paintbrush, apply a thin even amount of egg white to the flower or petal on both sides. Drop into a bowl of sugar and use a small spoon to sprinkle sugar and flip to cover each side. Shake off the excess and set aside on a piece of parchment. If you see any wet places, add a bit more sugar. Let dry at least 4 hours or overnight. I also love the process Alice Medrich talks about here.
The mendiants will keep in the fridge for a couple weeks (if they last that long!). The edible crystallized flowers should be eaten in a couple of days.
- 100g chocolate (bittersweet, chocolate, or milk)
- Toppings of your choice (toasted nuts, coconut, dried fruit, etc)
- Edible flowers
- 1 egg white
- granulated sugar
Start by making the crystallized flowers. Choose edible flowers with a simple structure (not too many petals), or big rose petals are beautiful. Make sure the flowers are unsprayed and organic (the best are from your garden or local market!).
Briefly whisk the egg white with a fork to break it up and then using a clean small paintbrush, apply the egg white in a thin even coat on both sides.
Drop the flower into the granulated sugar and use a small spoon to toss the flower and coat both sides.
Set on a piece of parchment and let dry for at least 4 hours or overnight. If you see any dry spots, apply egg wash and sugar. If you see wet parts, sprinkle on a bit more sugar.
For the chocolate mendiants, melt the chocolate carefully either over a bain marie or in the microwave. Spoon rounds of chocolate onto a sheet of parchment. Sprinkle your topping of choice on top, including a crystallized flower.
Transfer to the refrigerator to set.